How much food can a 5 gal bucket hold?

Michael and I have been working on our long term food storage (LTFS) for over a year now. But keeping track of how much you have on hand, or how much you need to purchase is a struggle. We would fill our buckets and then a couple months later try to remember how many pounds fit in the buckets, how much do we still need to purchase to meat our goals, etc.

There’s a great customizable spreadsheet found at Food Storage Made Easy which will help you determine how many pounds of each staple you will need for your family. Then you can use the table below to determine how many storage buckets you will need to accommodate.

I have highlighted the 5 gallon column because that is what Michael and I use, and I believe that is probably the most common LTFS size. I have also highlighted the food items that we choose to store. We will need to expand our selection as time moves on, but this is what we currently focus on.

Pounds per Gallons (Estimated)

1 Gallon 1.5 Gallons 2 Gallons 5 Gallons 6 Gallons
This table includes estimates only, your results may vary
WHOLE GRAINS: (lbs.)
Cracked Red Wheat 5.83 8.75 11.66 29.15 35.00
Hard Red Wheat 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Hard White Wheat 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Pearled Barley 7.33 11.00 14.66 36.67 44.00
Whole Corn 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Hulled Buckwheat 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Flax 6.33 9.50 12.66 31.67 38.00
Long Grain White Rice 7.33 11.00 14.66 36.67 44.00
Long Grain Brown Rice 7.17 10.75 14.34 35.83 43.00
Par Boiled Rice 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Rolled Oats 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Oat Groats 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Oat Bran (Fine) 5.00 7.50 10.00 25.00 30.00
Rye 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
9-Grain Cereal 6.33 9.50 12.66 31.67 38.00
Hulled Millet 7.17 10.75 14.34 35.83 43.00
FLOUR: (lbs.)
Wheat Bran 2.50 3.75 5.00 12.50 15.00
All Purpose Flour 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
Cornmeal 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
BEANS: (lbs.)
Beans 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Anasazi 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
Black Turtle 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Black Eye 6.33 9.50 12.66 31.67 38.00
Garbanzo 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
Great Northern 7.00 10.50 14.00 35.00 42.00
Green 1.67 2.50 3.33 8.33 10.00
Green Peas 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
Kidney 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
Lentils 7.17 10.75 14.34 35.83 43.00
Lima 7.17 10.75 14.34 35.83 43.00
Mung 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Pink 6.83 10.25 13.66 34.17 41.00
Pinto 6.83 10.25 13.66 34.17 41.00
Refried 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Small Red 6.83 10.25 13.66 34.17 41.00
Small White Navy 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Soy 6.67 10.00 13.34 33.33 40.00
PASTA: (lbs.)
Pasta – Macaroni 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Pasta – Egg Noodles 2.67 4.00 5.34 13.33 16.00
Pasta – Spaghetti 5.83 8.75 11.66 29.17 35.00
SPROUTING SEEDS: (lbs.)
Alfalfa Sprouting Seeds 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
DEHYDRATED VEGETABLES: (lbs.)
Diced Carrots 3.33 5.00 6.66 16.67 20.00
Cross-Cut Celery 1.33 2.00 2.66 6.67 8.00
Chopped Onions 3.00 4.50 6.00 15.00 18.00
Potato Dices 2.67 4.00 5.34 13.33 16.00
Potato Flakes 2.50 3.75 5.00 12.50 15.00
Potato Granules 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Potato Slices 1.67 2.50 3.34 8.33 10.00
Split Green Peas 7.50 11.25 15.00 37.50 45.00
Tomato Powder 5.83 8.75 11.66 29.17 35.00
DEHYDRATED FRUIT: (lbs.)
Applesauce 3.33 5.00 6.66 16.67 20.00
Apple Slices 1.67 2.50 3.34 8.33 10.00
Banana 2.33 3.50 4.66 11.67 14.00
DEHYDRATED MILK/DAIRY: (lbs.)
Butter Powder 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Margarine 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Cheese Blend 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Non-Fat Milk 5.83 8.75 11.66 29.17 35.00
Morning Moo White 5.83 8.75 11.66 29.17 35.00
POWDERED EGGS: (lbs.)
Powdered Eggs 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Powdered Whole Eggs 4.17 6.25 8.34 20.83 25.00
Sugars: (lbs.)
White Sugar 35.00
Brown Sugar 33.00
Honey 60.00
Seasoning: (lbs.)
Salt* 35.00

Blank spaces indicates data not available at this time.

Download a printable word version: Pounds per Gallons

*If storing salt for canning or preserving purposes, make sure you are not storing iodized salt. Store salts that are stated for your given purpose.

Spreadsheet adapted from USA Emergency Supply

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